After months of snow, rain and wind, the balmy summer weather is a welcome change. But sun, chlorine, saltwater and humidity can take a toll on your curls leaving you with a mess of frizzy hair.
1. Keep it moist
"The key to keeping curls looking good in humid air is to make sure the cuticle of the hair is already 'filled' with moisture and proteins before you step out the door," says curl expert Ouidad. "Doing so makes the cuticle unable to soak in any additional moisture that is in the air, which can cause frizz."
2. Protect your hair
Sunscreen isn't just for the skin. Look for frizzy hair remedies that offer sun protection for your tresses. Some finishing and styling products contain sunscreen with an SPR 15. Leave-in mists are a great way to spritz the hair when you're in the sun to keep keep hair fresh and vibrant, whether it's straight, wavy, curly, coily or in braids.
3. Condition & clean
Diane Da Costa, author of Textured Tresses, suggests coating the hair with a leave-in conditioner before swimming in a pool or the ocean. After swimming, rinse your hair to remove all the residue of salt and chlorine and reapply the conditioner to protect the hair.
"You don't have to shampoo every day," Da Costa says. "But make sure you rinse everyday and apply that leave-in conditioner."
Avoid products like Sun-In, warns Curl Master Amie Zimmerman of Dirty Little Secret in Portland, Ore. "You might as well skip the expense and pour Clorox right on those beautiful locks." Zimmerman says.
4. Trim more, cut less
When it comes to hairstyles, longer is better, says Jonathan Torch of the Curly Hair Institute in Toronto, Canada. It allows you more 'style management' than short hair, especially with rising hair-shrinking humidity.
"You need to leave length for a Plan B," he says. "You will have days when you want it out of your face and a ponytail must be an option." He suggests getting regular trims, especially in the summer—every eight to 10 weeks for long hair and six to eight weeks for short hair.
"Leave your hair down and let dry naturally," says John Rudiant, Redken session artist.
Stay away from time-intensive blow-outs and high-maintenance styles."I avoid straightening like the plague," Torch says. "Curly hair is in. You might as well go for it. If you straighten it, you will be so weather conscious."
Torch especially likes high ponytails, where the hair is pulled back tight and the ringlets in the ponytail are well-defined. "It's an easy, quick updo that always works," Torch says. "Your hair is off your face, off your neck and looks soft and sexy."
Ouidad likes messy knots because they stay in place easily yet still show off curls. She suggests this half-bun version: secure the hair into a low ponytail and then pull the bulk of the tail back up through the elastic, stopping halfway. This creates a knot base, but allows for curls to spill over the top, creating a trendier look. Or for another fun summer look, you can secure the hair at the nape and gently twisting the ponytail into a loop and pulling the tail end back.
5. Kick up the color
When it comes to color, Torch says he's more 'aggressive' when it comes to summer color. He goes brighter, knowing that the harsh summer rays will cause it to fade.
Melanie Shelley, owner of Trim Classic Barber & Legendary Beauty, says the Audrey Hepburn look is big when it comes to summer color. Even stars like Faith Hill have traded their blonde locks for shiny milk chocolate brown with honey highlights. The rich brown tones reflect the light, making the hair appear healthier overall.
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Amie's Summer No-Frizz Tips
Paint or scrunch plain olive oil onto clean, dry hair. Pile the hair on top of your head and wrap it in plastic wrap. Cover it with a towel and leave on for 20 to 30 minutes. The heat from your head will activate the oil. Wash your hair a few times to get out the oil residue.